It’s funny how things work sometimes. We think we know what we want or what we need. We hope and pray for it, and then the very thing we didn’t want to happen, happens.
That was my experience at the LDStorymaker’s First Chapter Contest. I entered my first chapter and wanted to win. Of course. Everyone wants to win. If I could only win, I’d get a coveted “get out of the slush pile free” card. I wanted one, bad.
This particular story is one I’ve been working on since I became a writer. I’ve written, and re-written it at least a dozen times. It’s grown and progressed along the way—which is a good thing because when I first started writing it, I didn’t know anything about writing a novel. I didn’t even know about different genres or that there should be different ages for the main character in different types of novels. Still I persisted because I had a dream.
I finally thought it was ready.
Thank goodness for premonitions or I might have been really upset. I kept getting the feeling that I wouldn’t win. By the time I got to the conference I still wanted to be wrong, I wanted to win, but I wasn’t overly disappointed when I didn’t.
This is the good part, though. I didn’t win.
Because I didn’t win, I have taken the judges comments more seriously than I probably would have if I had won. And, because I took the judges comments to heart I’ve made improvements to my novel in a way I’d not have been able to do otherwise. (Actually a good portion of them had very nice things to say about my chapter and my writing in general which boosted my spirits considerably.)
I was finally able to see my MC though the critical eyes of my judges and it opened a storage-box of knowledge that I’d been accumulating all these years. Since then, I’ve been writing like a maniac, reading and re-reading, and writing some more.
Giggling like a school girl with a new tub of play dough, I’m molding my main character into the person I always wanted her to be, I’m shaping the setting until there’s a sense of place, and I’m giving dimension to my story.
In essence, I won big time.
Thank you, LDStorymaker’s and LDStorymaker’s judges!!! It was the best $10. I've ever spent.